Books 4 all
The Books 4 all project is still going strong with steady work from our group members. As for the recap for the newcomers, Books 4 all is an initiative where we are building a connection between students for used books also aiming to provide the logistics for it. In simple terms, it’s OLX for Books!
Now throughout Mega Project blog 1, we gave a general about the project and how we aim to carry it forward in the future. Blog 2 will focus on what we have achieved so far, what are the challenges we are facing and the sustainability of our project for the future.
Mega Project Progression
Books4all has gained a good amount of followers up until now, we have reached out to everyone through social media such as Facebook posts and Instagram posts etc. the google spreadsheet (Book Database) on which we report the number of books collected has been updated. We have shared it on university groups on social media in order to reach out to a large audience, willing to give their old used books. This has been the progress so far.
Challenges and Solution
The collection of the material itself is a major challenge because some people live very far away and for us to acquire their book and to deliver is hard due to cost.
We are creating awareness among the students that they can easily sell and buy the books they wanted and it will take time to have a strong and big network.
Finding a student who needs a book to buy/sell is still a big challenge. We are trying to promote and develop trust among students that we will be able to sell out their books.
Due to Covid-19, many universities are closed off which means there are little to no interactions between students, and most of them seem to prefer the soft copy version of the books.
Change in Approach
As we were finding it difficult for the target audience to register themselves on the platform, we decided to go for renowned teachers of O and A levels namely, Sir Asif Farooq, Sir Salman Haq, and asked them to recommend us and invite their Facebook friends to like our page. We are still working on getting registrations so that we have our Book Database filled with 20+ books by the end of the weekend and close to 50 books by the end of the Fellowship.
Reflections of Team Members
Now, a word from some of our team members about their roles, responsibilities and what they think about the project so far.
Umair Tasleem - Circle Leader: I have designed different social media posters and shared them on the page and on the groups. I made a form where people can register themselves too so we can edit their responses on Amal Book Bank. Along with that I have contacted some of my teachers to promote the word of the startup. It’s a little slow as expected due to pandemic and exams but we are doing good so far as a team.
Hafsa Hadia: We, as a team, have a goal to promote our mega project and to come in contact with the target audience as much as we can. I have contacted my family and friends for any book they wanted to sell or buy. I have shared mega project details through audio with all my contacts and groups but got no response because of the exam season. I individually called my 7 friends and this helped me to get 4 books registered. Being an introvert, it was difficult for me to promote our project and to ask everyone to sell and buy books from us. But this activity helped me a lot to minimize my negative impact of failure and rejection and to make me open to innovation and willing to take risks and to learn more from mistakes.
Sameen Khan: The benefit of teamwork was that if someone lagged behind, others were able to come in to help also with the brainstorming of ideas. We are able to find out many solutions for a given problem. The learning has been comprehensive and whoever is stuck can be guided by any of the members. The values that Amal had thought like 1 or 1 giyara can be seen through team work in the group and clear communication. Up till now, we are working as a team to bring in the followers on our social media and expanding our reach.
Fahad Ali: By using our network, we got some audience and likes on our Facebook page which exceeds around 230. But we are facing the issue to approach serious buyers and sellers. We also need to get sufficient numbers of books in our store. So, I started book collection by approaching my network. The problem I faced is most of my classmates, usually use library books and they have only the books they need. So, I decided to contact the platform with a greater audience. I posted in All Pakistan book reader, All Pakistan book depot and stationers, book nerds book reviews, Book share kitab kahani, and pdf books for book collection. Now the post only needs the mercy of admins. Our goal is to get around 50 books in our book bank within a month.
Ali Ahmed: I handle the blog write ups, catchy captions for social media pages and I have also managed to gather some books from my own cupboard and those are the books that are hard to find in soft copy is the real ticket for university students. Other than that, we as a team are working on being recognized by people as much as we can.
Saleha Shakeel: I have collected a few books right now and have communicated via social media pages to students . So far a big challenge for me is finding students who need books and for that I have contacted some of my juniors in the university.
So far it has been a challenge to start and to plan along the way, we believe that’s where our Amal came in because we took the step into the unknown to start the initiative and are going strong with it. We are still working on being recognized by the general public and to start delivering as soon as possible. Our progression has a steady pace to it, our approach to the challenges is effective but it requires time. Once we are done with those, we will be able to operate effectively.